The Director of Media and Publicity for All Progressives Congress Presidential Campaign Council, Bayo Onanuga, has described the Attorney-General of the Federation, Abubakar Malami, as a “public enemy”.
The PUNCH reports that Malami, who is also Nigeria’s Minister of Justice, on Wednesday, asked the Supreme Court to dismiss the suit filed by three northern state governments, challenging the Friday, February 10 deadline set by the Central Bank of Nigeria to end the legal tender status of the old naira notes.
This came hours after the apex court restrained the Federal Government, through the CBN, from implementing the Friday deadline for the currency swap.
A seven-man panel of the apex court led by Justice John Okoro, in a unanimous ruling, granted an interim injunction restraining the Federal Government, the CBN, and commercial banks from implementing the Friday terminal date for the old naira notes.
Delivering the ruling in the application filed by the governors of Kaduna, Kogi and Zamfara states, Okoro granted the relief as prayed.
He stated, “An order of interim injunction restraining the Federal Government through the Central Bank of Nigeria or the commercial banks from suspending or determining or ending on February 10, 2023, the time frame with which the now older version of the 200, 500 and 1,000 denomination of the naira may no longer be legal tender pending the hearing and determination of their motion on notice for interlocutory injunction.”
But the government argued that the supreme court lacks jurisdiction to entertain the suit in a preliminary objection filed by the AGF through his lawyers, Mahmud Magaji and Tijanni Gazali.
Consequently, the Federal Government is asking the apex court to strike out the suit for lack of jurisdiction.
In court filings dated Wednesday, the AGF contends that “the plaintiffs have equally not shown the reasonable cause of action against the defendant.”
On February 3, the three state governments had sued the Federal Government over the naira redesign policy of the CBN.
The states urged the court to compel the President, Major General Muhammadu Buhari (retd.), the CBN and commercial banks to rescind the February 10 deadline for the old N200, N500 and N1000 banknotes as Nigeria’s legal tender.
While reacting to Malami’s move, Onanuga said Malami had allegedly joined the CBN Governor, Godwin Emefiele, as a “public enemy”.
“Abubakar Malami is also a public enemy like Emefiele,” he wrote on his Twitter page on Wednesday.